Green Award – TMC
TMC is a company that has needed to adapt as the car industry moves to electric vehicles, and its victory in the Green Award category of the 2021 Company Car Today Innovation Awards shows quite how successful that pivot has been.
“Obviously everyone’s moving away from fossil fuels to electric vehicles, so TMC needs to change as well,” the company’s managing director, Paul Hollick, tells Company Car Today. “It’s always been on our strategy map that we needed to change and we decided quite early on that we wanted to be at the forefront and support fleets and drivers adopting electric vehicles.”
Hollick says that the speed of change has surprised him, and TMC is spending more time than expected at this stage on issues around EV reimbursement, compared with the expected consultancy and help for fleets looking to make the initial step into changing over their fleet.
“We built the stack from the start of the journey, working out which employees could go into EVs, then how to recharge, and then how to get reimbursed if you were out of pocket,” TMC’s MD says, highlighting reimbursement as a key and growing issue for businesses, with increasing numbers of drivers using EVs for work. “One thing we’re spending an inordinate amount of time on at the moment is cost-per-mile reimbursement, because the Advisory Electric Rate is not fit for purpose.”
The TMC-e platform is designed to use real-world data to help understand the true cost of an electric vehicle.
“If an employee is out of pocket, they need to be reimbursed fairly, based on the business miles covered at the cost they’ve consumed,” Hollick continues.
With the increased range of EVs on offer, and the gradual improvements in public charging infrastructure, he pinpoints reimbursement and kerbside charging for employees that don’t have off-street parking as the next two big issues for businesses. “I think the next knock-on is that people will start to compare data; how much on a cost-per-mile basis is that vehicle costing us; we have lots of metrics coming in the next couple of years.”
Once fleets have completed the move to electric, the cost of charging will come into sharper focus, with Hollick comparing it to fleets discouraging drivers from refuelling at more expensive petrol stations, such as those at motorway services. “Fleet managers will start to consider how to get employees thinking about cheaper energy suppliers, and being smarter about charging on the highway. That topic is going to evolve very rapidly.”
TMC’s EV reimbursement work includes feeds on office and home charging – if workers have a OCCP-enabled smart meters, or using energy supplier details if not – and allows drivers to record mileage via an app or online system, which provides a calculation to the payroll department.
TMC also conducts a monthly EV webinar that it claims are attended by up to half of its customers. “The most important thing is that we’re trying to support the fleet manager, we’re not trying to provide a consultancy service or provide any level of conflict between what the fleet manager wants and what we want,” concludes Hollick. “Whatever the customer wants, we can help and support that.”